Ryan Ka Lok Lee, from the Prince of Wales Hospital in Hong Kong, and colleagues retrospectively evaluated 172 groin ultrasound results from 151 patients (101 men; mean age, 59 years). The accuracy of ultrasound in diagnosing the presence and type of groin hernia was determined as was any change in the accuracy of ultrasound over time (January 2002 through December 2010 [54 groins] versus January 2011 through December 2012 [118 groins]).
The researchers identified 119 groin hernias diagnosed using ultrasound. Limited magnetic resonance imaging and computed tomography scanning was performed on all patients who had had positive results for hernia on ultrasound but did not undergo surgery (11 patients) and on most patients whose ultrasound was negative (48 patients). The overall rates of sensitivity and specificity of ultrasound for diagnosing the presence of groin hernia were 96 and 96 percent, respectively. These rates improved from 92 and 88 percent before 2011 to 98 and 100 percent starting in 2011. The overall accuracy for diagnosing groin hernia type was 96 percent, which also improved from 91 to 98 percent from prior to 2011 to beginning in 2011.
“Ultrasound is highly accurate at diagnosing the presence and type of groin hernia,” the authors write.